|Piano and I||Photos taken by Nikki Cid|
Thanks to repeat concert buddy/cousin, Nikki, we were able to score GOLD seats. Despite my blindness, we were close enough to actually see Alicia Keys's features as she performed onstage. Thank goodness it got moved to the oh so pretty SMX Convention Center, because I can't imagine being outdoors with the possibility of rain.
Yes, the concert started very very late. At 8pm, we thought we were going to wait at the maximum an hour, but no, we waited for 2. According to MTV Intern/backstage pass holder/BC soul sister, Sophie, Alicia Keys arrived 3 minutes before the actual start of the show, so it really couldn't have started any earlier because she wasn't really there.
But really, who cares? Because when she did arrive, she performed her ass off. From the opening song, Go Ahead (where she did this crazy head/hair spinning thing - literally) to the encore of If I Ain't Got You, I
|The Many Faces of Ms Keys||Photos taken by Nikki Cid|
I told myself that she HAD TO sing How Come You Don't Call Me just because it's my favorite song ever and I was practically screaming when she performed it. I'm not a big fan of the song Diary, but then she sang it with her backup singer/amazing amazing vocal prowess Jermaine Paul and I was sold. Their blending was just awww-mazing and I was floored.
I was hoping Usher would show up for My Boo but I was pretty satisfied without his appearance. Nikki as saying if John Mayer showed up for Lesson Learned (which she didn't perform), the earth would open up and eat us all from the awesomeness of the event.
She dedicated Like You'll Never See Me Again to her Nana, who was celebrating her birthday that day and it was just the most heartfelt performance ever. Everyone was singing along and I swear I thought I was going to cry soon. Then the intro for Fallin' played and the crowd went even wilder. Everyone was standing (the guards finally gave up) and everyone was waving and singing and there were flashes everywhere.
Obviously, an encore was in store, she hadn't sung No One yet after all. And when she came out to sing it, you could barely hear her over the screams of the audience. If people were going crazy during Fallin, it was mass hysteria with No One. Some people actually left thinking there wouldn't be another encore but there was and she performed If I Ain't Got You and you could see couples everywhere slowly swaying.
Fabulous just doesn't cut it. I can't express how much I loved loved loved the concert. Alicia Keys sounds as great and even better as she does on the record and she really knows how to work a crowd. She was a total performer, not just playing her piano, not just singing, she was dancing and making meaningful conversation with the audience.
I wish the concert could have lasted longer but it ended at 11:45 already. She said she couldn't wait to come back to Manila and I'm hoping she comes back when she has a new record, because I cannot wait to see this woman in concert again. She was meant to perform live and I'm so going to be there next time around.